Texting While Driving in Massachusetts: Stats and Penalties
MA Driving Laws
Since 2010, texting while driving in Massachusetts has been prohibited. However, motorists behind the wheel continue to pick up and use their phones. Even if we think that checking our texts quickly while driving is harmless, the threat of accident and injury is still very real. Whether you’re driving on Route #16 through Sherborn or the back roads of Dover, it’s important not to drive distracted. To help you understand the risk and penalties that texting and driving hold, read on for statistics.
During the year that the law was enacted, we would expect to see the number of tickets issued to be high as people were just getting used to the new law. We would expect to see that the number of tickets issued would decrease over time. However, this is not the case. In September 2010, the law came into effect. The total number of tickets issued for that year was 274. Since then, the numbers have risen steadily, with 1153 issued in 2011, 3399 in 2013 and 6131 in 2015.
Researchers found that men commit the offense more than women. Additionally, white drivers make up 77.4 percent of the tickets issued. Drivers under 30 also represent the majority of citations. Lastly, most tickets were issued between 3 and 6 p.m.
The penalties are steep for texting and driving in MA, and for a good reason, too. Even just a couple of seconds of distracted driving can result in accident and injury. For the first offense of texting while driving, it is a $100 fine. For the second offense, it is $250, and $500 for the third. What’s more, your auto insurance rates can increase at the next renewal period, costing you even more money over the years.
As if the financial penalties weren’t high enough, consider these statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. In 2016 alone, 3,450 people were killed. 391,000 were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers in 2015. During daylight hours, approximately 481,000 drivers are using cell phones while driving. That creates enormous potential for deaths and injuries on U.S. roads. Is a text really worth putting your life and others’ at risk?
Work with a company that’s dedicated to securing the quality auto insurance that you and your vehicle need and deserve. Contact the professionals at CAV Insurance, located in Wellesley, MA.